New York COVID-19 deaths expected “in the thousands,” state health commissioner says

Governor Cuomo

ALBANY – State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker said Sunday he expects coronavirus deaths in New York to be “in the thousands.” As of mid-day Sunday, there were 965 reported deaths. Zucker made his comments during Governor Andrew Cuomo’s daily virus news briefing.

Cuomo said one-quarter of the deaths in the state are occurring in nursing homes, where residents are elderly or have underlying medical conditions. He said nursing homes are “toxic” for the virus. “It’s lethal.”

The governor also said health officials expect the apex of the pandemic in New York to be rolling. The City of New York is the center of the virus now and he said it will likely travel to Westchester County or Long Island next.

He also extended his directive that all non-essential government workers stay home until April 15.

The USNS Comfort, a 1,000 fed hospital ship, is expected to arrive in New York harbor tomorrow (Monday). The fully staffed floating facility will not be used to treat COVID-19 patients, but rather to backfill patients with other medical conditions who would normally be treated at hospitals.

Cuomo said say the state is resilient. “This is New York. We will make it through. We are going to be okay.”

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